Dong Nai river full of waste water, millions of people in danger

Dong Nai River, which runs through many provinces and cities, has received waste water discharge from production workshops, industrial zones (IZ) and fishing village's for years.

IZ relocation plan still on paper

Bien Hoa 1 IZ is one of the major causes of the serious pollution to Dong Nai. Because of this, 19 years ago, a plan to relocate Bien Hoa 1 was approved by the Prime Minister.

Dong Nai river full of waste water, millions of people in danger



However, to date, the relocation has not occurred. The problem is that involved parties still cannot reach a consensus on compensation for enterprises which lease land in the IZ, though Dong Nai provincial Party Committee Secretary Nguyen Phu Cuong has asked to speed up implementation of site clearance and conversion of the IZ’s functions.

Under the relocation plan, the work of settling pollution problems and converting the function of Bien Hoa IZ was assigned to Sonadezi Development. Do Thi Thu Hang, Sonadezi’s chair, said the work has been completed, but the next steps have not been implemented.

Currently, there are still 82 enterprises renting land, of which 63 enterprises have land rent contracts that will expire in 2051, and 5 enterprises in 2021. Meanwhile, 14 enterprises have stopped operating and they have leased land to others for warehouses and workshops. 

Currently, there are still 82 enterprises renting land, of which 63 enterprises have land rent contracts that will expire in 2051, and 5 enterprises in 2021. Meanwhile, 14 enterprises have stopped operating and they have leased land to others for warehouses and workshops.

New pollutants for Dong Nai

 

A repeated phenomenon occurs regularly on La Nga River, a tributary of Dong Nai River which runs through La Nga Commune, Dinh Quan District, Dong Nai Province: hundreds of tons of caged fish die after one night.

The same thing occurs in Tan Mai Village of Bien Hoa City.

No official statement about the reason behind the mass fish death has been made. The local authorities think the fish die because of improper farming techniques. But farmers attribute this to waste water from industrial production workshops nearby.

They said the workshops, using water from heavy rains, discharge waste water into the environment, which kill fish. Some local people think that fish cages cause river pollution with the fish feed.

What can local authorities do?

The local authorities have drawn up measures to mitigate the pollution of Dong Nai. However, people say that authorities are not serious about implementation.

The Dong Nai provincial authorities, for example, asserted that there must be more frequent monitoring over waste disposal, that it is necessary to set up a surface water monitoring system, reorganize the Tan Mai fish farming village and remove the pig farm which discharges waste water to the river, and deal with sand exploiters with a heavy hand.

However, the work has not been fulfilled.

Mai Lan 

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